Happy pause for animal home
THE future of animal shelter Happy Paws Haven is hanging by a thread, pending the outcome of an extension hearing next week.
A six-month deadline to complete a series of court-ordered requirements expired yesterday but has been stayed after Happy Paws Haven owner Sally Rogers applied last week for a three-month extension to complete the work.
About $10,000 worth of work still needs to be completed at the Eatonsville animal shelter to comply with the necessary requirements, and a hearing for the extension has been set for May 22 with the Land and Environment Court in Sydney.
Mrs Rogers said if council was going to contest the application they would have to appear in court.
If not, the hearing can be completed via phone.
Clarence Valley Council has a policy of not commenting on legal issues and declined to discuss the issue but it is clear the extension will be opposed by at least one party.
Socrates Domatas, who lives alongside the facility, said the noise at Happy Paws Haven had become considerably worse in the past three or four weeks and he believed there were more than 14 adult dogs being kept on the premises.
"I do night shifts and I get woken up in the early hours of the morning," he said.
"I then try to have a couple of hours sleep in the afternoon before I go to work but it doesn't happen. The dogs are always barking on and off.
"The noise is horrendous."
A dog owner himself, Mr Domatas said he was prepared to go to court to present his side of the matter.
"We are going to approach the Land and Environment Court ourselves and put in an appeal before the court case so they know things haven't changed and have actually got worse," he said.
"They gave her six months to complete it because it was a charitable organisation, now she wants another three months. It's not on.
"This is not going to happen this time."
Mrs Rogers said the shelter would keep working towards the court-ordered requirements in the lead-up to the hearing.
"I'm not stopping just because of this, we will keep trying to comply," she said.